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The Effects of Left Ventricular Assist Device Support Level on the Biomechanical States of Aortic Valve

Qi Zhang, Bin Gao, Chang Yu

School of Life Science and BioEngineering, Beijing University of Technology, Beijing, China (mainland)

Med Sci Monit 2018; 24:2003-2017

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.906903

Available online:

Published: 2018-04-05

BACKGROUND: Although aortic valve disease caused by left ventricular assist device (LVAD) support has attracted more and more attention, the precise biomechanical effects of LVAD support level on the aortic valve are still unclear.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: A structural finite element models study was conducted using an ideal aortic valve geometric model. Four different study conditions were designed, according to the reduction of the open duration of the aortic valve. The isotropic hyperelastic constitutive equation was chosen to reflect the mechanical property of the leaflets. The distribution of the stress, strain, and transient dynamics of the leaflet were calculated.
RESULTS: Along with the increase of LVAD support level, the open duration of the aortic valve was also reduced by the increase of LVAD support (low support level case 0.23 seconds versus middle support level case 0.2 seconds versus high support level case 0.14 seconds). Moreover, along with the increase of support mode of LVAD, the von Mises stress in most leaflet areas was increased from the low stress level (0–0.4 MPa) to the middle region (0.4–0.8 MPa). Once the leaflets were continuously closed, the high stress level (larger than 0.8 MPa) was observed. In contrast, the support level of LVAD only had slight effects on the distribution of von Mises strain. According to the aforementioned results, maintaining the open duration of aortic valve longer than 0.2 seconds could achieve better performance of biomechanical states of leaflets.
CONCLUSIONS: This study could provide useful information on the determination of optimal LVAD support strategy.

Keywords: Aortic Valve, Biomechanical Phenomena, Finite Element Analysis